SEX WORK AND COVID-19 (Coronavirus)
The government has told us that we should not meet up with people outside our own households. We should not leave our homes except:
– to get food or medicine
– once a day for exercise
– for health reasons (such as appointments or going to hospital)
Sex and COVID-19 (Coronavirus):
The government has advised that it is only safe for us to have sex with someone who lives in the same household, provided that they do not have COVID-19 symptoms and are not from a high-risk group.
- – Any close contact (less that 2 metres / 6 feet) with another person will put you at risk of catching or passing on Coronavirus.
- – If you meet with clients, this can put you at high risk from getting or passing on COVID-19.
If you are still sex working, we recommend that you stop meeting with clients.
We know that not everyone feels able to do this. We also know that now is a very difficult time if you usually depend on sex work for your income.
Please contact us as soon as you can for non-judgemental and confidential advice and support if:
- – you cannot afford food, gas or electric
- – you have debts
- – you are worried about housing
- – you are worried about your health
- – someone else is putting pressure on you to work
- – you depend on sex work to pay for drugs or alcohol
- – someone is bullying or harassing you
- – you need help to stop working (just for now OR longer term)
IF YOU ARE FROM OUTSIDE THE UK: We can offer you confidential support and advice, regardless of immigration status. We can call you back using a telephone interpreter.
IF YOU ARE STILL MEETING WITH CLIENTS:
Please contact us now for safer working information and to discuss your situation and options.
We will do whatever we can to help or advise you.
You do not have to give personal details if you just need brief advice and information.
Some people are changing to non-contact options such as cam work, video chat services, phone sex or pay per view content. This can be a risk to your privacy if you can be easily recognised. Remember clients can take screen shots and some apps mean the call can be recorded.
For more information on safety and privacy when working online click here
We are happy to offer further advice or support around this. Please contact us
CONDOMS AND SEXUAL HEALTH
Condoms protect against HIV and other STIs, but COVID-19 is transmitted in breath droplets.
- – Some people may not show symptoms, but can pass on COVID-19.
- – If you go to someone else’s home, or car or if you allow them in to your own home, this will put you and other people you have contact with at risk of COVID-19.
- – It is also a risk to meet someone outdoors if you cannot stay 2 metres apart.
Brighton Sexual Health is offering FREE STI testing kits (Chlamydia, Gonorrhoea, Syphilis & HIV)
FLASH is a project run by us at SWOP – confidential, easy to use, FREE rapid result HIV home self test-kits for sex workers that you can order online.
We can also arrange for condoms and Chlamydia & Gonorrhoea self-test kits to be collected from us at Oasis Project. Please call or text us first to arrange: 07801 376158
You can access free emergency hormonal contraception (EHC) if you cannot afford or are unable to access an NHS prescription from these pharmacies
We are happy to find out information, make referrals or contact services on your behalf.
Contact us AT SWOP OR CALL YOUR LOCAL SEXUAL HEALTH CLINIC IF YOU HAVE ANY WORRIES OR CONCERNS ABOUT SEXUAL HEALTH.
OTHER USEFUL CONTACTS / INFORMATION DURING COVID-19
You can contact us at SWOP Monday-Friday 9.30-5pm for emotional or practical support.
We are happy to make referrals or contact other services to find out more information for you. We can also advocate on your behalf if you are worried about contacting services yourself.
MONEY/INCOME: If you are worried about money or worried about making a claim benefits, we are happy to talk things through and explore different options with you. SWARM (Sex Workers’ Advocacy and Resistance Movement) have set up a hardship fund for sex workers. There is a waiting for this – however they are able to make awards of up to £200 to some sex workers who are experiencing financial hardship. This fund is also open to migrant workers from outside the UK who do not have access to public funds.
GETTING FINANCIAL HELP FROM YOUR CLIENTS: If client offers financial help, make sure you are both clear about what both expect from each other. When will they need it back? What will happen if you can’t pay it back? Do they expect anything in return?
IF YOU ARE HAVING PROBLEMS FROM SOMEONE WHO HAS LENT YOU MONEY: Check in with Stop Loan Sharks website
HOUSING: Please talk to us if you are homeless or worried about eviction: We know every situation is different – so will offer support and advice and referrals that are most appropriate for your situation.
PEER SUPPORT: National Ugly Mugs are running peer led webinars on YouTube about financial help and support during the COVID-19.
NATIONAL UGLY MUGS: is offering support across the UK, along with their usual incident reporting and alert scheme to all UK based Sex workers. https://uglymugs.org/um/
STALKING AND HARASSMENT: Visit the Sussex Stalking Support website